I recently did a layover in Qatar, and I wanted to share my experience on What to do in Doha on a 24-hour Stopover.
If you’re flying with Qatar Airways, then this is the perfect guide for you.
If you have a connecting flight in Doha and want to leave the airport, then it’s possible by booking a flight with a long connection time.
Why not break up your flight journey with a stopover in between.
This way, you can relax in a hotel and explore a new city before continuing to your final destination.
You can do a lot in 24 hours in Doha, which makes this an ideal stopover destination on your next trip to Qatar.
Here is my 24 hours itinerary suggestion for a stopover in Doha, Qatar:
Fly to Doha with Qatar Airways
Qatar Airways is one of my favourite airlines, and I’ve always enjoyed flying with them.
When travelling with Qatar Airways, you get a modern fleet, top quality service from the incredible staff, good inflight entertainment, fantastic food and beverage service, comfortable seats, all at an affordable price.
Typically, those routes that offer a stopover turn out to be the Cheapest flights, which is an attractive bonus to visit a new city for 24 hours and save at the same time.
Also, Qatar Airways are a One World airline partner so that you can access many benefits for those with frequent flyer status.
I’ve never had a bad economy flight with Qatar Airways and always found the connecting flights straightforward when transferring through Hamad International airport.
Visa free entry to Qatar for UK passport holders
UK passport holders and over 80 other countries can enter Qatar visa-free with an entry on arrival.
Show your connecting flight ticket and passport, which is needed to enter Qatar from the UK for a 24-hour layover.
Get a 24-hour bus ticket from the airport to explore Doha.
Head to the bus terminal after passport control, and you can find a selection of cash machines along the way if you wish to grab some local Qatari Riyal.
I would recommend purchasing a Doha 24 hour limited bus pass smart card for 10 QAR, which works out around £2.
The pass includes two journeys and consists of the airport bus, which makes this pass great value to get to and from Doha during your 24-hour stopover.
You can also pay 20 QAR for unlimited journeys within 24 hours, but personally, two trips for your stopover will be enough. You can buy the pass from the driver.
Where to stay in Doha: The Westin Doha Hotel and spa
I would highly recommend staying at the Westin Doha Hotel and spa.
I found the rooms to be modern, comfortable, and spacious with relaxing showers and all the facilities you would need after a long flight.
I loved that the hotel was within close distance to the Souq Waqif and offered swimming pool facilities which was a nice bonus.
The breakfast buffet was great, and the staff was super helpful and friendly. I would stay here again.
If you wish to stop over, you can book an affordable hotel in advance on the Discover Qatar website with your flight booking.
Hamad International airport HIA
You can spend your time at Hamad International airport at one of the many lounges or explore the large airport, loads to do if you have a few hours to spare.
Qatar Airways has many flights connecting Doha with the world.
Break up your flight, explore the city of Doha for 24 hours, get some rest and enjoy a nights stay, then fly to your final onwards destination.
National museum of Qatar
I could not visit the National Museum of Qatar as it was just opening a week after my trip.
I wanted to share this option with you as it looks incredible from the outside from what I could see, and a lot of investment went into putting it together.
I would visit on my next trip to Qatar, and it is a solid option as a visitor attraction.
Explore the Souq Waqif
Souq Waqif is a must-visit on any trip to Doha, Qatar.
Dating back to 20th Century in a traditional Qatari architectural style, it’s been recently restored in 2006 and hasn’t lost its charm.
Walk around the souq and soak in the atmosphere of the everyday hustle and bustle of this market. It’s great fun to walk around here and get lost down the side alleys, and you never know what you might find.
Enjoy a spot of shopping too and see what souvenirs or gifts you can find at Souq Waqif.
If you need help with your shopping, you can hire a porter to help you wheelbarrow your goods to your car.
My highlight of Souq Waqif was visiting one of the selections of sweet shops you can find here.
Grab a bag and go around filling it up with treats from the large selection before weighing them at the end. Perfect for those with a sweet tooth.
Dine at Layali al Qahira
Layali al Qahira is located within Souq Waqif and is an excellent spot for evening dining offering traditional Arab cuisine.
I ordered a nice mixture of dishes typically found in Qatar, such as a large mix of Mezzah.
I wasn’t brave enough to try the camel kofta sandwich, but maybe next time.
They Also offer shisha pipe here with mint tea which went down a treat in the evening.
Take a dhow trip by the pearl monument
Located close to the pearl monument, you can find a selection of Dhow boats that can take you out to sea on a small tour around the harbour.
Perfect for enjoying the Qatar Skyline when the sun starts to set and the lights begin to come on.
Visit the Museum of Islamic Art
The Museum of Islamic Art building is a stunning architectural feat, and it’s even more incredible inside.
Highly recommend spending a few hours here exploring the world’s largest collection of Islamic Art pieces on display before heading back to your hotel for the evening.
Loads to do on an 24 hour stopover in Qatar
Wake up early in the morning, nice and fresh, enjoy the hotel breakfast buffet, maybe fit in a morning swim before checkout, then heads to the airport to grab your connecting flight. It’s that simple.
Doha, Qatar is perfect for a 24-hour stopover between flights and if you happen to be flying with Qatar Airways, see if you can fit in an extra day to visit on your next trip.
Don’t forget you can also book a whole host of affordable tours and excursions through Discover Qatar for Qatar Airways customers.
My advice would be to book them as early as possible as they sell out quickly.
An excellent idea if you would like to explore more of Qatar on a second visit.
Here are some itinerary examples:
– Discovery Mangroves of Qatar by kayak, 4-hour duration.
– Discover the Dunes and inland sea by 4×4, 4-hour duration
– Discover Icons of Qatar, 5 hours duration.
Prices and duration vary and are available for Qatar Airways customers.
All you have to do is opt into the Discover Qatar stopover program and supply your flight details when booking.
Break up your trip with a stopover and explore more of what Qatar has to offer.
Check out my video about my 24 hour Stopover in Doha, Qatar
Here is a video from my recent 24-hour stopover flight with Qatar Airways in Doha, Qatar.